Port Authority investigating “secret” $10 WTC naming deal

1 World Trade Center

1 World Trade Center

Port Authority officials will review what they say was a “secret deal” decades ago to sell the rights to the “World Trade Center” name to a nonprofit for just $10 – an agreement that the authority now wants out of.

The deal also requires the authority to give the nonprofit group World Trade Centers Association free office space — which is valued at $500,000 — in the new, 1,776-foot high 1 World Trade Center tower, for use of the name. “I am gravely concerned that a secret deal, years ago, sold the name of the World Trade Center for 10 bucks,” Port Authority Deputy executive director Bill Baroni told the New York Daily News. “And I’m going to look into (it).”

Former WTCA executive Guy Tozzoli earned millions by licensing the name through the WTCA to the World Trade Center complex, the Bergen Record reported.

But the WTCA’s legal counsel Scott Richie told the Daily News that there was nothing shady about the deal. “I think the 1986 agreement speaks for itself,” Richie said. “It was signed by the appropriate officer of the Port Authority.” [NYDN]Hiten Samtani 

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